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Distribution Notes: Ubuntu Linux (x86)

General

Ubuntu Build Notes

Information in this document relates to Ubuntu-supplied builds of Mozilla and Mozilla Firefox, and using the Ubuntu package management system to install or update plugins. Please note that the Mozilla Foundation can not provide support for Ubuntu packaged builds of Mozilla or Mozilla Firefox, and that questions should go through the Ubuntu Linux support channels.

Official Build Notes

Users of official builds of Mozilla and Mozilla Firefox should refer to PluginDoc for Linux (x86) for plugin installation information.

Enable the Multiverse and Universe Repositories

To install most plugins using apt-get, you will need to add the Multiverse and Universe repositories. For information about enabling this, see the AddingRepositoriesHowto page on the Ubuntu Wiki.

What plugins does this document cover?

This document currently covers Acrobat Reader, Flash Player, Java, RealPlayer, mplayer-plugin and totem. For other plugins, see PluginDoc for Linux (x86).

Flash Player

How do I install Macromedia Flash Player?

Enable the Multiverse repository, and run the following command from a terminal:

Ubuntu Linux 5.04 (Hoary)
sudo apt-get install flashplugin-nonfree
Ubuntu Linux 5.10 (Breezy)
sudo apt-get install flashplugin-mozilla

How do I install a free Flash player?

For users who do not wish to use the Macromedia Flash Player, the open source gplflash is available. Note that it can be unstable, and can not play Flash 6 or 7 content (this will be addressed in gplflash2).

To install gplflash, enable the Universe repository and run the following command from a terminal:

sudo apt-get install libflash-mozplugin

You may however wish to compile gplflash instead. For instructions, see the compiling gplflash section of the RestrictedFormats page on the Ubuntu Wiki.

Flash Player Issues

The following are known issues with Flash players on Ubuntu Linux (x86):

For more information about issues with Flash Player, see the Linux Issues section of the Flash Player FAQ on PluginDoc and the Flash Issues section of the RestrictedFormats page on the Ubuntu Wiki.

Java

What version of Java should I get?

If you're using Ubuntu Linux 5.10 (Breezy), the easiest version of Java to install is Blackdown Java. Unless you need to run applets that require a specific version of Sun Java, particularly 1.5.x, you are generally better off using Blackdown Java. If you're using Ubuntu Linux 5.04 (Hoary) or older, you should use Sun Java.

How do I install Blackdown Java?

Enable the Multiverse repository, and run the following command from a terminal:

Ubuntu Linux 5.10 (Breezy)
sudo apt-get install j2re1.4

How do I install Sun Java?

The best way to install Sun Java is to grab the installer and convert it in to a .deb package. The following instructions are based on the Sun Java section of the RestrictedFormats page on the Ubuntu Wiki, which should be referred to in the event of any problems with this procedure.

You will need to install the fakeroot, java-package and java-common packages before you install Sun Java. These are available from the Multiverse repository. Run the following command from a terminal to install them:

sudo apt-get install fakeroot java-package java-common

After installing these packages, grab the latest Sun Java Runtime Environment (5.0 Update 6 at the time of writing), and make the installer executable by running the following command:

chmod +x jre-1_5_0_06-linux-i586.bin

To convert the installer to a .deb package and install it, run the following commands:

fakeroot make-jpkg jre-1_5_0_06-linux-i586.bin
sudo dpkg -i sun-j2re1.5_1.5.0+update06_i386.deb

Other Plugins

How do I install Acrobat Reader?

If you are using Ubuntu Linux 5.10 (Breezy) or later, enable the Multiverse repository, then install Acrobat Reader 7.0 and set the plugin up by running the following command from a terminal:

sudo apt-get install acroread mozilla-acroread

Users of Ubuntu Linux 5.04 (Hoary) or earlier will need to install Acrobat Reader 7.0 manually. Instructions are available on the Linux (x86) page of PluginDoc.

How do I install RealPlayer?

RealPlayer can be installed using several different methods, although the recommended method is to install the Debian package. Download the RealPlayer 10 Debian package, and install it by running the following commands from a terminal:

cd ~/Desktop
sudo apt-get install libstdc++5
sudo dpkg -i realplayer_10.0.6-0.0_i386.deb

For other methods of installing RealPlayer, see the RealplayerInstallationMethods page on the Ubuntu Wiki.

How do I install mplayer-plugin?

Install mplayer (see the MplayerInstallHowto page on the Ubuntu Wiki for instructions), and possibly the w32codecs package too (see the Codecs section of the RestrictedFormats page on the Ubuntu Wiki for instructions).

After both of those packages are installed, run the following command from a terminal to install mplayer-plugin:

sudo apt-get install mozilla-mplayer

How do I install Totem?

For totem-xine, run the following command from a terminal:

sudo apt-get install totem-xine totem-xine-firefox-plugin

For totem-gstreamer, run the following command from a terminal:

sudo apt-get install totem-gstreamer-firefox-plugin

How do I install other plugins?

To install plugins that are not listed here, see PluginDoc for Linux (x86).

Resources

How do I get support for Mozilla and Mozilla Firefox?

Ubuntu Resources

If you are using Ubuntu supplied builds of Mozilla and Mozilla Firefox, or have Ubuntu-specific questions, the following Ubuntu community resources may help you:

Mozilla Community Resources

If you need support for official builds of Mozilla Firefox, or issues that are not Ubuntu-specific, the following Mozilla community resources may help you:

Acknowledgments

The author wishes to acknowledge that much of the information in this document is based on material from the Ubuntu Wiki, and that assistance was also provided by the folks in #ubuntu on Freenode.